Shortline railroads awarded safety improvement grants
The North Carolina Ports Authority and 12 other shortline railroads have been awarded a $10.2 million grant fund in support of health, safety and performance improvements.
Credit: North Carolina Department of Transportation
The grant funds will subsidise the N.C. Department of Transportation’s (NCDOT) Rail Freight and Rail Crossing Safety Improvement programme (FRRCSI), which aims to support rail infrastructure health, safety and performance throughout the state. The programme will further enable NCDOT to partner with rail companies on improvement projects to move freight more effectively. This partnership helps railroads meet customer needs efficiently and in cost-effective ways while preparing them for foreseen growing service demands and future partnerships with new enterprises and industries.
The grant funds contribute to nearly a total of $20.4 million dedicated to rail infrastructure improvements projects statewide. Funds awarded are as follows:
Aberdeen and Rockfish: $390,000 for a project to modernise rail bridges in Cumberland County.
Alexander Railroad Company: $750,000 for two projects to improve track, railroad crossings and expand truck/rail transload operations in Alexander County.
Atlantic and Western Railway: $430,000 for a project to upgrade track and switches in Lee County.
Blue Ridge Southern Railroad: $4,506,000 for four projects to upgrade track, railroad crossings and bridges in Haywood, Buncombe, Henderson and Jackson counties.
Carolina Coastal Railway: $2,196,000 for a project to increase low train speeds by improving bridges and track in Wake, Nash, Johnston, Wilson, Greene, Pitt, Beaufort, Washington and Martin counties.
Chesapeake & Albemarle Railroad: $1,865,000 for two projects to upgrade railroad track and improve bridges in Currituck and Camden counties, and construct a transload facility with upgraded turnouts in Pasquotank County.
Great Smoky Mountains Railroad: $1,922,000 for a project to upgrade railroad track and bridges, and raise the track bed to prevent washouts in Jackson and Swain counties.
Laurinburg and Southern Railroad: $1,000,000 to improve track and switches in Scotland County.
North Carolina and Virginia Railroad: $747,000 for upgrades to siding tracks in Bertie and Northampton counties.
North Carolina State Ports Authority: $1,411,000 for two projects to provide rail upgrades and install radiation scanners necessary for transporting intermodal containers via rail at the Port of Wilmington in New Hanover County.
RJ Corman Railroad Company: $2,484,000 to upgrade crossings and track in Columbus County, NC and Horry County, SC.
Wilmington Terminal Railroad: $1,191,000 to upgrade track in New Hanover County.
Yadkin Valley Railroad: $1,500,000 to upgrade track, switches and bridges in Forsyth, Stokes, Surry and Wilkes counties.
The Rail Freight and Rail Crossing Safety Improvement programme was inaugurated in 2013, by the General Assembly.